How to Celebrate Asian American & Pacific Islander Heritage Month With Kids

May is Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month, a time to honor and pay homage to the generations of Asian and Pacific Islanders that have contributed to the history and culture of the United States. It’s important for everyone to celebrate this month and educate children about this immigrant group and its rich history of culture and heritage. And as a Filipino-American mother of bi-racial kids, it’s really important for me to teach my children about their roots.

With the rise of anti-Asian racism and violent attacks in America, it is all the more vital to increase cultural awareness and inclusiveness in our children.

“At the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center, we meet with students and recent graduates who tell us that they never learned about Asian American or Pacific Islander (AAPI) stories in school,” Andrea Kim Neighbors, manager of education initiatives at the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center, tells SheKnows. “Many seek these histories out themselves through books, documentary films, or AAPI community organizations. This is something I can identify with as well. I was not aware of the term ‘Asian American’ until after college, and even then, it took some to see myself as part of the Asian American community. It is important to learn about AAPI stories and histories at all ages because we are not perpetual foreigners, we are not a stereotype. Our center aims to see AAPI stories taught in every classroom across the U.S., and to have our resources accessible and available for learners around the world, so that future generations can see themselves and their stories reflected in what they learn at school. We are part of a beautiful, complex, and global interconnectedness, and we have many stories to tell.”

From reading books and trying different cuisines to making crafts and visiting virtual museums, there are a number of cool ways to explore the history, art, and contributions of Asian-Pacific cultures with your little ones.

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1. Learn & play trivia

Make learning fun by creating an educational trivia game. Your kids can learn about Asian-Pacific history and culture. Create flashcards with categories such as historical facts, famous people, food/cuisine, art etc. Write a few facts down for each country, and award points for each correct answer. Not sure what to ask in this quiz? Then maybe start with a few of the facts in this video:

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